NEW DELHI: People humiliating medical professionals, who are on the frontline of the battle against novel coronavirus, should be named and shamed, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said on Thursday.
Vardhan was delivering the keynote address at the 'Global Online Conference on COVID-19: Fall-out and Future' organised by The Times School of Media, which is part of the Bennett University.
Vardhan's comments come in the backdrop of reports about health professionals coming under attack in various parts of the country.
Vardhan, in his address, stressed that social distancing and lockdown are the most potent social vaccine at the moment to combat coronavirus.
Vardhan, who is also the minister of Science and Technology said India is among the five-six countries which have isolated the virus and has proceeded towards the development of a vaccine.
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"We are part of the World Health Organisation solidarity trial where we are working on vaccine. All the scientific work that is related to management of COVID-19 pandemic is going on.
"I strongly feel that social distancing and lockdown are the most potent social vaccine at the moment. As long as we do not have a vaccine, social distancing right now and lockdown remains the most potent social vaccine. This is a point that needs to be underlined right now," he said.
The minister also thanked the medical professionals who have been on the frontline of fight against COVID-19 "despite all the possible risks of getting infected".
Some cases appear where they are being humiliated or ostracized in the society due to one reason or the other.
"Every day we hear such information. I think we have to name and shame such people and stand with the medical professionals and ensure that such incidents do not happen in the society," he said.
Stressing that India had begun preparations to tackle the virus right from the time China reported about it to the WHO, he said India has the lowest cases per million at 3.8 across the world and has a doubling rate of 4.58.
The Union minister said a majority of districts in the country are still unaffected and asserted that there is a very aggressive containment strategy in place.